Autumn Equinox

Fall Equinox

With the sun’s entrance into Libra on September 22nd at 6.55pm PT, we are ushered into a new season. With this change comes an invitation to recalibrate. At the equinox, light and darkness are balanced in the heavens and here on earth, reflecting a deeper spiritual and psychological yearning for harmony.

Libra is concerned with balance. What has been unfairly weighted? What is hanging in the balance? Who has been unjustly left with too little? Where is there too much exertion and not enough rest. What has become complacent within us? Where have we fallen asleep and how might we re-awaken?

In the Northern Hemisphere, fall is here. This is the time of year where the Dark Goddesses descend. The aspect of The Mother that reminds us that all life cycles must come to a close. She asks us to take stock of what we have grown. Asks what are we reaping? What had a chance to become all it could? What was robbed of sun, water, and nutrients?

In the Southern Hemisphere, spring is arriving and with it the Goddesses of Renewal. The aspect of The Mother that encourages us to plant the seeds we most want to grow and eventually see take shape in our lives. Hope and rebirth flood the earth as all manner of new possibilities arise.

In honor of Libra Season, we might imagine ourselves as the other, in the season opposite from us.

For those of us entering fall, we can take a careful look at what crops did well, which didn’t, and what we might repeat or rework come again next spring. Repeatedly planting the wrong seedlings is a good way to waste resources and no way to feel nourished by our surroundings. At this point, we remember how short a year really is.

As the darkness closes in around the corners of our garden, possibility gets passed over for repercussions. We remember that death is a part of our life’s process. There is no evading this aspect of the Great Goddess, there is only living a good, deep, and meaningful life in light of our eventual release from it. Our impending end is supposed to make the moments here more meaningful. We don’t get forever, but we do get this life, for now.

The Autumnal Equinox reminds us to harvest gratitude for our gifts. A love of the lessons we got to live through this summer. A deep respect for time and all it has to teach, as well as all it takes away. The good and the grief.

For those of us entering the spring, what fields do we want to be harvesting six months from now? We can plant a million seeds, but we only have resources for specific aspects of our lives to take shape. Being thoughtfully selective now will help you work wisely in the long run.

As the sun enters Libra, it comes up against an unforgiving and, frankly unflattering, square to Saturn on September 25th. The full harvest moon on September 24th highlights the tension and tells us many tales about the things we cannot get out of, but will grant us the good grace of maturity, wisdom, and self-respect when dealt with.

Ritual Ideas for the Autumnal and Vernal Equinox:

Autumnal Equinox Altar

If this is the Autumnal Equinox for you, gather apples, corn, root vegetables, squash, acorns, seeds in their pod, spices and anything else that is seasonally available or resonant for you personally. Scythes, harvesting tools, woven straw, and baskets are also seasonally representative. Also, light one black candle and one white candle to represent balance.

Sit at your altar, light your candles, and write a list of everything that you are grateful for. Write about your appreciation for the darkness in your life, its healing qualities, its powers of renewal, and its ability to add depth and richness to your life. Write about your appreciation for the light in your life, its healing qualities, its powers of inspiration, and its ability to remind you of all manner of possibilities.

Vernal Equinox Altar

Gather all things related to spring where you are. Branches with blossoms, sprouting grass, colorful flowers, milk and honey, eggs as symbols for fertility and prosperity, seeds to plant in your garden or around your neighborhood, a black candle, and a white candle to symbolize balance.

Light your candles and sit at your altar. Write a letter to all the things you are hoping to grow this year. Write in the most encouraging way you can to each seed you are planting. Speak to the possibilities that lie in each intention.

Meditation for both the Autumnal & Vernal Equinox

Sit in meditation for a moment feeling appreciation for the inhale and exhale of your breath. The weight and the lightness in your body. The warmth and the coolness around you. Feel all things contrary and opposite occurring at the same time. Give thanks for the sensations, for the season, for the opportunity to experience another turning of the earth.

Harvest Season Celebration Meal

Gather with friends and make, or ask folks to bring, their favorite fall dish and drink. Share stories and sentiments about what everyone is grateful for. This can include looking back at the seeds we planted in the spring, lived out through the summer, and are now harvesting in the fall.

Spring Intention-Setting Meal

Gather with friends and loved ones. Make, or ask everyone to bring, a favorite dish that reminds them of the spring. Ask everyone to bring at least one intention that they want to set and see grow over the course of the next two seasons. Have everyone back again come the fall and check in on how the intentions came to fruition, or what was learned about why they didn’t.

Copyright © 2018 Chani Nicholas, All rights reserved.

Chani Nicholas

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